Thursday, July 11, 2013

Touching All the Bases

 Or as this game is played, both bases.  There are only two.


In order to run under its own power, the 36 will need trolley poles, and therefore trolley bases.  Al and I went out to the container and brought back the car's two bases for overhaul and repainting.  They both seem to be in good condition, so basically I knocked all the loose tar, paint, and rust off the bases, while Al sand-blasted the loose parts.  And I topped off the oil.

(L) Before starting, it looks like this.

(R) Partway through the cleaning process.

Meanwhile, Rich Witt continues to assemble all his boxes, little boxes, little boxes made of ticky-tacky...   sorry, wrong song.  They're actually made of poplar.  But they do look just the same, and they will look just right when installed on the cars.

I also checked out the parts for the grid box we need to rebuild, and so on.

 By the end of the day, the bases were ready for primer, as seen in Al's previous post.

But wait, that's not all!  For its 60th birthday, your Museum received a Cleveland streetcar, as we have already said, although for practical reasons the wrapping hasn't been removed yet.  And four CTA cars.  The first of them arrived last evening via Silk Road.

Here it is inching its way around the corner of Depot and Central. 

And sitting on its trailer at the crossing.  Cars of this class are still in service on the CTA for a little while longer.

Unloading went very smoothly, thanks to the skill of the Silk Road driver, Rod, Jerry, Rich Schauer, and a couple of others.  Jim West and I just rubbernecked.

 Rich helps Rod position the ramp.  We have this down to a science.

With a little more work, it looks like this.  As the sun sinks slowly in the west....
I wish I had a video of this.  I know nothing about the mechanical systems on these cars, but Jerry does this for a living, so after the chains and chocks are removed, the car rolls down the trailer and the ramp with Jerry walking alongside, operating the mechanical actuator to control the braking. And it rolls gently down onto our track and comes to a stop at a convenient spot.

Then two of our CTA 2000's couple up and pull it away.  It took slightly under half an hour from the time the trailer was spotted to coupling up to the car, now at its new home.

And I believe plans are to install poles on these cars and put them into operation quickly.  Of course, these cars never have conductors, so instead we need volunteer panhandlers to come through the train and annoy the passengers.   I'm sure Jim West will be glad to sign you up.


Good progress was made on the 36's control system, and there were a few connections to the grid boxes that had been loosened for some reason.  It seemed to take forever, but those were finally tightened up.

And the trolley bases and the grid box parts got a coat of finish black, as seen here.

And all this time, contractors were hard at work on the west side of the property, grading and filling and so on.  I'm not sure what all is intended, but this work involves drainage and street improvements.


Anonymous said...

FOUR CTA cars...?

I don't suppose two were brown and orange, were they...?

Randall Hicks said...

No, afraid not. There are two Budd cars and two more only for parts, as I understand.

Anonymous said...

So all four cars are 2200's? Are there any plans to acquire a pair of 2400's? I've read they are on the verge of retirement also.

Cliff McKay

Anonymous said...

The last two rapid transit cars are series 2000 car bodies which have been held by CTA for cannibalizing and parts. Our intention I THINK is to finish that job and strip them of anything useful and send the rest to scrap.

Bob Kutella

David Wilkins said...

To add what Mr. Kutella said:

The stainless steel with fluted sides are 2400s, which are the cars that arrived at IRM recently.

Jeron G. said...

No Dave, they're 2200's.

Anonymous said...

The car in the pictures is 2243. 2400's are stainlee steel cars with sliding doors. 2200's were the last cars built with blinker doors.


Jeron G. said...

Also, 2400's (as well as 2600's) do not have stainless steel fluting. They are smooth side cars similar to the 6000's, 1-50's, and 2000's.

David Wilkins said...

This is what happens when you never buy Volume II of "Chicago's Rapid Transit Vehicles." I still think the 4000s are "new."

Glad we got it all straightened out.